Benedict’s Rice Named HBCU Coach Of The Year

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Benedict College head women’s basketball coach James Rice has been named HBCU Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year by the website The Undefeated, it was announced Tuesday.

The Undefeated surveyed and interviewed 47 players and coaches from 24 HBCUs. Schools from NCAA Division I and Division II and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics responded to questions.

Rice received 26 percent of the votes to edge out Virginia Union’s AnnMarie Gilbert, who had 22 percent.

Rice completed his seventh year as head coach of the Lady Tigers, guiding Benedict to a 20-7 overall record and going undefeated (15-0) during SIAC regular-season play. He was named SIAC Coach of the Year. In seven seasons, he has a 141-65 (.684) record.

Benedict sophomore Ay’Anna Bey finished as runner-up in the voting for HBCU women’s basketball Player of the Year, receiving 23 percent of the votes. Shakyla Hill of Grambling State was named Player of the Year with 47 percent of the votes.

According to its website, the Undefeated is ESPN’s new website dedicated to race, sports and culture, and where the voices of prominent African-American athletes are heard loud and clear on the issues that they care about most. Far from being general interest media, The Undefeated produces storytelling focused on the African-American community.

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